Maria Gonzalez was born and raised in Bogota, Colombia of Cuban-American Father and Spanish Mother. She finished high school in Madrid Spain and did first year at the Universidad de Madrid. She completed her Bachelor's degree in Liberal Arts (1972) and a Masters in Spanish (1973) both at San Jose State University. She then taught Spanish at San Jose State until 1976. She also taught ESL (English as a Second Language) with the Metropolitan San Jose Adult Education District.
Ms. Gonzalez left teaching in 1976 and served in the US Army active duty until 1981. She completed a Master's Degree in Military Science (Command & General Staff College) at Ft Leavenworth, MO in 1989. She remained in the Active Reserve and retired in 2004 after 28 years of service. She worked concurrently in AT&T for 25 years and retired in 2004. She returned to teaching in 2005.
Maria Gonzalez lives with her husband, Thomas (Tom) Santos in Santa Clara. They both enjoy their families, two wonderful grandchildren, scuba diving and traveling.